Oaths taken during dictatorship constitutional: Justice Ramday

November 14th, 2007 - 2:48 am ICT by admin  
“This is all verbal jugglery. Sometimes terms such as ‘constitution held in abeyance’ were used, but the fact remains that the country continued to be governed under the 1973 Constitution even during the military regimes,” observed Justice Ramday.

He is one of 11 judges hearing petitions challenging the Election Commission’s acceptance of Musharraf’s nomination for the October 6 presidential election.

Justice Ramday’s remarks came after Aitzaz Ahsan, counsel for petitioner Justice (retired) Wajeehuddin Ahmed, contended that Musharraf had already taken two oaths as President and thus could not become President for what would be his third term.

Ahsan said that Musharraf’s first oath under the Presidential Succession Order 2001 was a Constitutional oath.

He questioned if the oath taken by judges under the Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO) was under the Constitution.

At this, Justice Ramday remarked that it was constitutional and the Constitution continued to function one way or the other since 1973.

“I am not ashamed of taking oath under the PCO. I took oath under the PCO and have not taken any other oath,” he said.

Justice Ramday further said that the Constitution had been made a joke and everyone used it for their own purposes.

Justice Faqir Muhammad Khokhar remarked that it had to be examined if Musharraf’s term under the succession order could be treated as a full term.

Ahsan contended that being a candidate for President, the qualification and disqualification rules in the Constitution applied to Musharraf.

Article 63 of the Constitution disqualified Musharraf from running for election while in uniform, the Daily Times quoted Ahsan, as saying. (ANI)

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